Gear

Arccos Caddie Knows All

That’s Because He’s Artificially Intelligent and Lives Inside Your Smartphone

By Sam Eichner ·
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We’d like to introduce you to your new caddie.

He’s extremely knowledgeable...

He learns from your mistakes...

He can forecast the weather...

And he lives in your smartphone.

Ok, fine. You got us: your new caddie is an app. He’s called Arccos Caddie, he’s powered by the Microsoft Azure cloud and he’s the first (and only) artificial intelligence platform in golf. You can download him starting Monday, and from now on we’ll just refer to “him” as “it” so as to avoid a weird Her-like situation.

You probably have questions. Thankfully, your intrepid new caddie is standing by with answers.

Hello. How do I hire you?
Well, I work with the Arccos 360 golf system, which basically uses tiny little sensors on your clubs to track your performance. Once you’ve played five rounds with those, I’ll have enough data on your game and you can use me on a subscription basis.

Great. Do you take a percentage of my winnings like other caddies?
No. But do you have “winnings”?

Touché. Now, what makes you different from all those other golf apps?
Via Microsoft Azure’s cloud platform, I have access to the more than 61 million shots hit by the Arccos community, as well as 386 million geotagged data points on more than 40,000 courses.

That’s not not a lot.
I also harness the machine learning capabilities of Azure to simulate you playing the hole at hand tens of thousands of times, using various club combinations and strategies.

So...
So when you’re standing on the tee, I can show you the best path to the lowest score, the likely shot distance—taking into account weather and elevation—and give you your odds of making par or missing the fairway left or right. For par 3s, I can show your chances of hitting the green.

That means you’ll handle club selection, right?
Right. I mean I won’t actually “handle” anything because I don’t have hands, but I’ll definitely let you know which club to use, wherever you are on the course. And because of the whole “artificial intelligence” thing, the more you play with Arccos, the better my recommendations will be.

Ha. Just like a real caddie.
Right. Only less human.

Will you help me read putts?
On your own there.

This should really give me a leg up on gambling.
I can neither confirm nor deny that fact.

Sam Eichner likes literature, reality television and his twin cats equally. He has consistently been told he needs a shave since he started growing facial hair.

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